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File: 1627816437480.png (2.04 MB, 1920x1080, The Conjunction.png)

 No.756270[View All]

The Echoes are changed to their core.

Skylord Lysander is dead. The veil of the Cuckoo's Egg is lifted, revealing a new and altered world. The old chaos runs rampant. In a distant land, the flame of ambition is lit in a woman's heart. And somewhere, sometime, the drifters who were at the heart of it all awaken, amidst the ash and rubble of their former home.

Runes of Union hang in the sky, radiating their primordial spell. The world is unmade and remade again. Beyond the scope of the light they knew, and beyond the reach of the terror and dark, the drifters tread now, peering through the fog of the Conjunction, in search of answers…
203 posts omitted. Click reply to view.

 No.756595

>>756587
>6 Aqua Vite
"So the tools, the potions… Oh, and any kind of lantern oil or anything?"

 No.756596

>>756594
"Hey! Glad you got some replacements, sweetie. Do they feel right enough for you?" Rabi asks, nuzzling against the mare softly.

>>756587
"So… map-making. How do we do this, Marisol?"

 No.756597

>>756589
"Make them myself!" he says proudly. "Or… I did, at least. I used to be pretty good at magic, but over time I've just… lost the knack, I guess. And the tools. Tools are useful. Heh. But mostly just the spark's gone. Can't really explain it any better. Ever since the sun vanished, I just can't do it anymore…"

>>756592
>>756595
Morris thinks. "Hmmm… Nope, don't have any tools. The torches come with oil to light them, though. Could use that," he suggests.

>>756596
"Well, I can do most of the actual mapping. I'm good that that. I'd just need you to actually scout when we're out there, and do your magic… thing." She seems lost for words at the moment. "What you did before to show me. I don't think it'll work if we're just sitting around out here though. An overhead view is useful and all, but if we're not in the field ourselves testing our skills against the wilds, then we won't have much to report to Dalliance other than the basic geography. Know what I mean?"

>>756592
>>756593
>>756594
>>756590
Aurora clears her throat at the mention of Zunden. "About that. We've been talking, and I think it's better if we both sit this one out. Zunden and I, that is. We'll stay here in town, at the inn. Seems like a good place to stay awhile and help out."

-5 rations - 25
-5 torches - 10
-2 wards - 30
-2 herbs - 20
-8 heals - 160
-twindaggers - 60
-total: 305 bits, -50 credit: 255

 No.756598

>>756597
Morris goes around and gathers your things, putting everything into neat little bundles for you to gather. "Thanks, good chums! Always good to have new faces around here!"

 No.756599

>>756597
"Right! We'll just have to keep up with it. I'll, ya know… limit it- I don't want to make you sick again."

 No.756600

>>756599
>>756597
"That's fine, Aurora. Take care of her- please. We've lost enough as this has all unfolded… I don't want to lose anyone else." he says, rubbing at his neck. "We'll try to come by and visit- I will, at the least."

 No.756601

>>756597
I sigh. "Darn. Maybe I can ask around, but not many people to ask. Alright, thanks anyway. And yeah, that should do the trick." I grab my potions and put them away.

I look up at Aurora and knit my brow, not sure if I should actually say anything. After a moment, I finally decide and clear my throat. "She, uh… How's she doing?"

 No.756602

>>756597
Aegis's expression is unchanging ''That is awful. I hope you recover your passion some day''
Then she turns to Aurora
''Very well. If anyone can keep her safe it will be you, Aurora. Please dont forget what we learned together and keep training whenever you have the chance. We might be lucky and find another Harbinger to stay in touch''

 No.756603

>>756596
She takes a moment to unsheath the daggers, feeling the weight out and giving a few test motions, before nodding.

"Oh yes, these will do just fine, dear." She replies, returning the affection.

>>756598
"Not a problem, Morris, a pleasure to meet you as well!" I reply, taking my bundle with a nod.

>>756597
I pass between zunden and Aurora a knowing look, before nodding.

"For the best, it seems. We'll be certain to relay what we find as soon as we return, you two."

 No.756604

>>756600
"I will. Thanks, Rabi. Don't be a stranger."

>>756601
She can't seem to find the words at first. "……She'll get there. Eventually."

>>756602
"Well, this isn't goodbye!" she explains. "Just see-you-later! You guys are coming back, after all. I'm sure there's nothing out there you can't handle."

>>756603
She nods back. "We'll be around. Someone needs to liven things up around here."

>>756603
>>756602
>>756601
>>756600
With your provisions sorted, you head for the gate leading out of town. Aurora and Zunden follow you to the exit, and say their farewells there. You see Dalliance making the rounds in the distance. She takes a moment to salute you as you go to leave.

"Do you think they'll be okay on their own?" Violet asks. "Zunden and Aurora, I mean."

"They're in good hands!" says Gawain. "Zunden just needs some time off, is all. And Aurora is stronger than she knows. We'll be together again before we know it!"

The three circular runes in lieu of a sun hang above you as you exit the seaside town of Moonhollow. The craggy hills ahead loom ominously, yet even in the gloomy setting, there are little glimmers of beauty to this place. It's almost comfortingly open and quiet.

There are three paths you could take to explore:

Off to the left, the hills turn into cliff faces, forming a set of rocky gorges, ravines and caves. Difficult to traverse, but not impossible. Mapping this place would be essential for anyone looking to leave Moonhollow, as it is essentially a natural maze.

Ahead, the vegetation grows more sparse, giving way to a series of rock formations connecting with the ravines off to the left. It would be fairly easy going, were it not for the plethora of rocky spires and boulders obstructing the path.

Ahead is flatter terrain, sloping gently downward into a dense woodland region. This is the way you arrived from, though it is now covered in a layer of dense fog. You could retrace your steps and take in your surroundings more properly now.

 No.756605

>>756604
"I won't. Promise." He says, giving Aurora a hug. He holds it for a few moments, before pulling away and sighing. "I wish I could've helped her more."

>>756604
"I'm… hmm. Maybe the hills and cliff faces? Between Silver and I, we can spot out the right way to go. I don't know how I feel about the fog…"

 No.756606

>>756604
''It might be harder without the both of you. I hope the world will be kinder to us than in the past'' Once at the gate, Aegis gives Aurora a curt bow before leaving. 'Indeed, Aurora has a strong will and a natural talent, she only needs to confidence to use them''

>>756605
''Well, any path we take will have ways of avoiding the Serpent's sight and wrath, so I agree on the Cliff faces. A good place to start''

 No.756607

>>756604
I just give her a nod. On the way out I take the time to pour two of the Aqua Vite into my potion canister to fill it up, seal it, and lock it into my bandolier. I do the same with a single oil canister, actually locking it into my sprayer.
>1 Aqua Vite canister [4 Uses]
>1 High Aqua Vite canister [1 Use]
>1 Oil Canister
>3 Empty canisters

>>756604
>>756605
"I say we either start with where we came from or over at those rock formations. We probably shouldn't mess around with the caves and cliffs without climbing gear. Should probably grab some back in town before going out there."

 No.756608

>>756607
"Ah, excellent point. I might be able to avoid the fall, but the others wouldn't be so lucky.. perhaps the spires are a safer option for now."

 No.756609

>>756607
''I suppose'' Aegis says flatly, ready to follow into the Spires.

 No.756610

>>756609
>>756608
"Not like we can't just check the other way if this turns out to be a bust anyway. Just seems like the safest option, and probably also the quickest to rule out." When everyone else starts moving, I head to the rocks.

 No.756611

>>756609
>>756610
>>756608
>>756605
"Seems reasonable enough," Violet nods. Marisol brings up the rear, taking in the landscape and filling in the map as you go along.

As you leave Moonhollow, there is a faint rumbling. Looking skyward, you see the clouds moving unnaturally fast. Closer glimpses reveal slender reptilian forms shifting within the clouds. The serpents are watching you.

You approach the rocky region. It is bereft of any plantlife, save for the occasional shrub or struggling sapling. The terrain is plain, consisting of dirt and stone. All around you are the stone formations you noticed, boulders for the most part, but occasionally you see what can only be described as spires. These odd formations are like huge stone spikes, towering upwards for dozens of feet, culminating in a sharp, pointed tip. You are reminded of the central hive in the Shifting Sands.

"How curious," Gawain comments as you pass the third one of these. "Do you suppose they're natural formations?"

"Not like anything I've ever seen," says Marisol. "Then again, given the circumstances, I don't think anything here is natural."

"Are we going the right way?" Violet asks uncertainly. "I think we went in a circle. I swear I've seen that boulder before."
>roll Navigation

 No.756612

>>756610
''What if we marked the spires with something? It would help ensure we dont get lost and would be a guide for anyone traversing here in the future''
'1d10' Navi

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.756613

>>756611
"Probably not natural," I agree. I shudder a little as I think of the hive. Maybe I should try to get a better look. I pull out my spyglass and level it at one of the spires.

[1d10]Perception, Improvise
[1d10]Nav

Roll #1 4 = 4 / Roll #2 9 = 9

 No.756614

>>756611
"Natural? Hard to say, really… weather can do crazy things on its own, but there's plenty of supernatural stuff here that could add to that, I wager. As for the right way… I unno, lemme try guessing it out…"
>Precognition: +3 to the Navigation Roll. Crit on a 9+ [1d10+3]

Roll #1 5 + 3 = 8

 No.756615

>>756611
"The serpents are aware of us, yet they've opted to leave us be, for now.. How curious. perhaps they really are only after the village.."

[1d10] Navigation

Roll #1 6 = 6

 No.756620

>>756612
"Good thinking," Marisol nods. "We should probably point the way back towards town, so we know which way to go as well, not just where we've been." She holds up one finger and extends its claw, scratching a crude arrow on the side of the spire. Their surface, while made of stone, seems to lend itself to carvings.

>>756613
You examine them a bit closer. They are made of dark brown stone, bursting upwards from the ground and… curving? It's as if they sprouted, or were built, in a slight curved pattern, arcing slightly along their surface. You count six of them at least, of varying heights, though there seem to be more.

Marisol shields her face from the sun to observe them alongside you. "What do you suppose they are?" she asks curiously.

"Big rocks," Violet deadpans, taking initiative and starting to climb one to get a vantage point. She gives up halfway, running out of footing.

"They don't look natural at all," Marisol continues. "Something's fishy."

>>756614
You take a moment to use your newfound clairvoyant powers. You get visions of you and your companions getting lost multiple times, allowing you to cross off some of the possible paths ahead.

"Uh, you okay there?"

Violet tilts her head in slight confusion. "Didn't know you could float like that."

You become aware that you are floating a few feet off the ground, doubtless a side effect of your clairvoyance. "You need a hand getting down?" Marisol stares from the sidelines in slight confusion as you find yourself floating back down. It's a slightly disorienting feeling.

>>756615
"How queer," Gawain comments. "It seems that anyone can come and go, except for its original inhabitants. Why would they be imprisoned in their own homes so?"

"Maybe there's something they're not telling us," Marisol ponders. "Something that those twin snakes don't want getting out."

>>756615
>>756614
>>756613
>>756612
As you do reconnaissance in this area, you start to get a good idea of the way forward.

 No.756621

>>756613
>>756620
Correction: you count five of them in the immediate vicinity, though there seem to be more on the horizon. Marisol does a quick count and maps the way forward.

>>756615
>>756614
>>756613
>>756612
As you do reconnaissance in this area, you start to get a good idea of the way forward. Just as you're ready to press on past this little maze, though, you see a flash in the sky, and a streak of rainbow light. Just past the maze of spires, in your path, is another one of those reality bending seals, charred into the ground by magic. "Another one of these," Marisol comments. "Let's not touch it this time and let it do its thing. Gods know what we triggered last time…"

On another note, it seems that past the claw-like spires is a cliff face. It should give you a good view of the region as a whole, speeding up the mapping process significantly.
>roll Perception

 No.756622

>>756620
''I was thinking of using some kind of tincture or paint to mark it, but that will do for now''
>>756621
Aegis squints as she watches the charred seal marked on the ground ''Marisol'' She speaks up, turning to the felid ''Write down the spot where this mark appeared on the map. It is a stretch but someone in Moonhollow might know of its nature, and it might still be here once we're back''
'1d10' perceptionne

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.756623

>>756620
Rabi blinks a couple of times as he snaps out of his trance, and realizes… he's floating. The stallion fails his legs a little and whinnies, before saying "A-Ah. I Didn't know I did that either. I was checking out what paths would and wouldn't work… I've narrowed it down some!"

He lets out a nervous chuckle, and says "And… yeah, help down would be nice."

 No.756624

>>756621
"Not another rune.." I groan, taking flight to avoid it as fly towards the Cliff's edge and a bit beyond.

>bounce

[1d10] Perception

>>756622
"I had hoped Zunden would be able to glean the rune's meaning, though in her state.."

I wince as the thought trails off.

"Better to check with the town, for now."

Roll #1 2 = 2

 No.756625

>>756620
"Not sure," I say. "But I agree that they're kinda weird. Even more outta place than everything else." I shrug. "Oh well. Doesn't change anything. Maybe get a closer look if we get the chance. Could always check one of them out before we leave."

>>756621
I shy away from the seal, wincing a little.
I point up at the cliff. So, we headed there? Looks like we'll actually be passing the claw rock things anyway. Maybe get a look at them on the way if they're actually anything important. The main thing I'm worried about is something having made them instead of them being natural."

[1d10]Perception

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.756626

>>756622
You turn to her, only to find her drawing a crude circle on the map already. "One step ahead of you. Might mean something to the locals."

>>756623
Violet reaches out, but you find yourself descending gently of your own will. "I guess that comes with the package," Marisol remarks. "Never was much for magic myself. Despite Grosvenor's wishes."

>>756624
"Better to keep away from them," Violet agrees. "World's changed, after all. Who knows what'll happen if we mess with them. We need answers before we go poking things again."

>>756625
"So it would seem," says Gawain, leaning back to get a full scope of the cliff. "Our mission is to observe, however, not to interfere," he points out. "I say we find a way up that cliff, take a look around, perhaps press on a little farther depending on what awaits us at the top. Then head back and be back home in time for dinner!"

>>756625
>>756624
>>756623
>>756622
After making your way past the strange spires, you survey the sheer rock face ahead of you. There are two options that you can see:

The first one is to take a narrow, difficult path along the cliffside, hiking up the rocky face to reach the summit. This would be the faster option, but without climbing equipment, there is a risk of injury or worse if you're not careful.

The second option is to go around. The cliff face slopes gently downward to the east, allowing you to climb the hill by going through a dead forest. This would be safer, but it would take much longer. You'd most likely have to camp for the night instead of making it back to Moonhollow.

"Hmm… Decisions, decisions," Gawain ponders. "Perhaps we won't be home in time for dinner after all."

"We've gone through worse," Violet says confidently. "This is just like that volcano at the Isle. I say we take the cliff path."

"If only Dawn were still here," Marisol laments. "We could skip this easily. Do we have enough supplies to camp for the night? If so I think we should do so and go around."

 No.756627

>>756626
''We are in no rush, So lets go around. I still have my camping equipment from before, I brought enough for one, but should be enough for us to share for a night or two''

 No.756628

>>756626
I nod to Gawain. "Yeah. Sounds like a plan to me."

I knit my brow as I look up at the cliff. "Can't Gawain just fly Marisol up there with my spyglass? She's the mapmaker here. Would be nice to get a good look ourselves, but having an idea of everything is still good."

 No.756629

>>756626
"It wouldn't be ideal, But I suppose we could take the path around."

>>756628
"Ah, excellent idea, Norvy. We could complete a fair bit of the map that way, Provided the two of them don't mind."

 No.756630

>>756626
>>756629
"Ah, though given the scale of the mountain range, perhaps we should reconsider.." I chuckle, realizing the distances from here.

 No.756631

>>756626
"Mmm. Yeah, most of the time I practiced it I was on my own, you know? Never really saw it." Rabi says, humming a little. "Anyways… we have the supplies to camp, I think- but between Gawain and Silver, we might be fine ascending the difficult path- I can try to see the best way to go up it."

 No.756632

>>756627
>>756628
>>756629
>>756631
"I, er, don't think I'm strong enough for that," Gawain admits sheepishly.

After a bit more back and forth, the majority wins out, and you start the long trek around the cliff face to hike up the hill instead. I It's a drab landscape, and dreary going, with the long dead skeletons of the trees rising up all around you. It takes up several hours. By the time you start nearing the summit, it's starting to get dark. It seems there's still day and night, despite the absence of a sun or a moon.

As you progress, mapping the way as you go, you see something flashing through the trees ahead. It looks like the same kind of magic that heralds the creation of runes, only this one didn't come from the sky. Violet draws her swords in caution. "What new devilry is this?" Gawain mutters, drawing closer and reaching for his zweihander. "Be careful," Marisol warns. "Let's hope whatever comes out of there isn't hostile. We're almost to the top."

 No.756633

>>756632
''It must be hostile, if it didnt draw the wrath of the serpents'' Aegis mutters, preparing her usual spell
'1d10+1' Homing Magic, ice

Roll #1 5 + 1 = 6

 No.756634

>>756632
>>756633
"I mean we're not drawing the wrath of the dragons either. Not yet at least." I check the canister of Aqua Vite in my sprayer, slot it back in, and try to summon three rats, just in case.

[1d10]Conjure Minion, Improvise

Roll #1 9 = 9

 No.756635

>>756632
"Hrm… well, that could be dangerous. Here's hoping it's friendly." He says, readying his bow.

 No.756636

>>756632
Spotting the lights in the distance, I duck behind some of the dead trees for cover
[1d10] Stealth

"Careful, the landscape as changed as it is we won't know what to expect out here."

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.756637

>>756636
>>756635
>>756633
>>756634
You ready yourselves for the worst: Norv summons some rats, while Silver hides behind some trees and Aegis conjures an icy spear to strike with. The rest of you draw your weapons as the rune continues to spark and glow, brighter and brighter. Tension builds to a boiling point…

There's a magical pop. When the light fades, there's nothing there but a small box. Looking inside reveals a welcome sight; a wooden Harbinger, in the shape of what looks like a very large, heavyset, serious-faced rodent. It reminds you of Aegis somehow.

"Oh. False alarm," Gawain says in mild surprise. Violet breathes a sigh of relief as she sheathes her weapons. "Phew. Thought we were in for it." Marisol isn't too sure, staying wary, but nothing more seems to happen. "Lucky find," she remarks. "We can use this, actually, if we need to send word to the villagers on anything that happens out here."

 No.756638

>>756637
''But who sent this? I expected there to be message attached to this Harbinger'' Aegis says as she picks it up with teleknesis

 No.756639

>>756637
"Oh."

Stepping out from behind the tree, I examine the Harbinger for a moment, looking between Aegis and the rat in curiosity before heading back to the path.

"What a curious find. You don't suppose it has a message still?"

 No.756640

>>756637
I laugh. "Well, better to be prepared and not need it. I'm not complaining."

 No.756641

>>756639
''What?'' Aegis asks, deadpan

 No.756642

>>756637
"That's… hey! Something good- that's definitely a nice change of pace. What a handy little thing, too."

 No.756643

>>756641
"N-nothing." I reply.

"Will you be holding onto the harbinger? As i recall you still have our remaining messenger, yes?"

 No.756644

>>756639
The resemblance is haunting.

>>756638
>>756639
>>756640
>>756642
There doesn't seem to be a message attached to it. It stays inert, staring blankly and judgmentally out at the world.

"Well, we shouldn't look a gift horse in the mouth, in any case," Gawain points out. "Who wants it?" Violet asks. "I mean I'll take it if no one else wants it."

Marisol takes the opportunity to survey the landscape, running up ahead to the edge of the cliff. Though it's getting dark out, her feline eyes let her see just fine, mapping out the landscape. "Huh. There's another cluster of those rock tower things. Five more, ten in total." She shrugs. "…We should see about making camp. Maybe somewhere not as open as this. I can see in the dark just fine, but the rest of you can't. And we could all use some rest after today's expedition besides." Gawain nods and takes to the air, scouting for a suitable place to hole up for the night.

 No.756645

>>756644
Seeing Gawain take flight, I join suit, using what's left of the light to double our efforts of shelter finding.

>bounce

[1d10] Perception

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.756646

>>756643
>>756644
''No, I lost the one I had. We'll share this, but I'll hold on to it. Speak to me if you wish to use it'' Aegis says as she bags the Capybara and begins unpacking some of the camping equipment ''I have a tent for one, but its big enough I think I can share with someone else except Gawain and Marisol''

 No.756647

>>756644
"I'll take it if nobody minds. Wouldn't mind replacing the one I lost."

I look up at the sky. "Yeah, it's probably for the best if we set up camp. Are the rocks just all clustered together? So two clusters of five?"

 No.756648

>>756644
"Right- let's make camp, everyone!"
>Camp setup roll? [1d10]

Roll #1 10 = 10


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